Deleting posts ‘not censorship’

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Origin has been slated online for a lack of public statements, poor call response times - and for deleting more than 300 messages on its Facebook page.

Managing director Oliver Bryssau said it was due to limited resources.

The firm, of Yorkshire Way, Armthorpe, had bolstered its six-strong technical support team in a bid to handle calls. But he acknowledged hold times were still long.

The entire workforce of 21 had worked round the clock to reconnect customers and answer queries and there had been little time to issue statements, he added.

And the Facebook page - where scores had vented their frustrations - was wiped and frozen to prevent people thinking it was a way to reach the helpdesk, according to operations director Peter Lowes.

Oliver Bryssau added: “We definitely didn’t censor anyone, we just don’t have the resources for social media. By removing comments we hoped people would contact us by the official channels where they would get an answer. I don’t have time for social media myself and the policy did not come from me. I’m sure the Facebook page will come back in time. We are one of the few companies that allow people to comment freely.

“We could have spent the last two weeks issuing statements but there’s nothing we could say that would help - people just want to get back online.”

Pete Lowes said they were planning to pay for public relations support.

He added: “We acknowledge we have some learning to do to play this PR game.”

They insisted Origin’s policy of not censoring the internet was unaffected - some ISPs restrict downloads and block access to some sites.